In the latest issue of Ordained Servant (with thanks to Old Life), David Noe is an Assistant Professor of Classics at Calvin College who, by way of exploring the differences between nouns and verbs and adjectives, seems to have arrived at the radical notion that there is an important difference between Christians doing education and so-called “Christian education.” He seems also have a radical notion that the redemptive term “Christian” really only applies to those who retain the imago Dei, or “…to those things closely and uniquely connected to Christ…’Christian worship, religion.'” To the extent that most within Presbyterian and Reformed enclaves tend very much to think that day schooling is as much a way to perpetuate faith as it is to instill the three Rs, one might add that somewhere involved in all of this is that there seems an important difference between curriculum and catechesis. But when it is commonly heard as to the reason for Christian day schooling that one wants his children to “get it at home, at church, and in school,” one wonders if there is more categorical confusion than clarity. Quoth Noe:
In conclusion, it seems to me that, as with cycling, philosophy, and music, the most we can say about “Christian education” is that it is education delivered or provided by Christians. This, of course, is not an unimportant claim. But when we say that, however, we are once again talking about dispositions and motives and saying nothing distinguishable either about the process or the result of that process. In short, it seems there may be no such thing as Christian education after all, at least not in the sense in which it seems often used, and that grand adjective which indicates a special closeness with the divine Son of God ought, perhaps, to be confined within a much closer compass: to persons whom Christ has saved, the worship such persons offer, and the study and promulgation of the divine Word on which that worship is based. If by “Christian education” this is what is meant, the term seems quite apt.